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New "free" project car?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Jagged, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    I've had this 99 Cavalier RS that I've been working on rebuilding for a little over a year now. It has a salvage title; ran into a jersey barrier. I replaced the front clip, straightened the frame, and did some bodywork on the passenger quarter. The quarter really needs to be replaced to do it "right." The car still needs airbags installed, new windshield, bumper covers, paint, side markers, and a taillight.

    I have an opportunity to do a straight-up trade for a 98 Cavalier Z24, which needs a new transmission (both cars are 5-speeds). The interior is about disgusting (interior on the RS is immaculate), however, I get to keep the interior for the RS. No knowledge yet on the mileage of the Z24. The RS has about 80k.

    I got the RS for $700, and have put about $130 worth of sheetmetal into it (fenders, and hood), and that's about it. I'm thinking that this might be a pretty good deal. I pretty much upgrade to the Z24 (2.4 DOHC vs the 2200 SOHC), FE2 suspension vs FE0 (read: poly bushings and sway bars), no bodywork needed vs still major work left, and a clean title vs salvage title for nothing.

    Yea/Nay? Comments?

    Oh yeah, the Z24 is black. I love black cars.
     
  2. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    id rather see you upgrade to an ecotec then a quad 4

    but would still be pretty neat i guess. could get some clear tailights and a big alum wing...

    what do you want to do with it? just a car to poke around in? or other plans?
     
  3. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    DD duties pretty much. If I get froggy, maybe some SCCA Auto-X (the J-body isn't that competitive, but Auto-X is still fun).

    Only ecotecs I can get are wrecked ones :( Swapping an Ecotec is an entire PCM/BCM swap :(
     
  4. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    eh, id prob fix it up then try and upgrade.

    dont like quad 4s.

    or the j body wet noodle shifter.
     
  5. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    Ecotec with a nice getrag would be excellent.

    But I'll take a quad 4 with an isuzu for a little over $800 :) Interior and tranny swap should only take a couple weekends.

    If I avoid the temptation to do any work on it, then I should be allright I think. It'll give the blazer a much-needed break so I can fix the transmission, and do the suspension work it desprately needs (ball joints!!!!)
     
  6. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    id be driving my k5 now if i didnt have something else to drive.
     
  7. 4xcrazy

    4xcrazy 3/4 ton status

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    a Cavalier???:confused:




    oooook then:crazy:
     
  8. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    Yeah, funny story almost.

    Driving the K5 around DD, wanted a cheap gas-mileage car. So, I scrounged up $700 and got two wrecked cars. A year later I almost have one rebuilt. Now I can finally can get a car to drive, and get better than 18 mpg.
     
  9. beater_k20

    beater_k20 Banned

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    you definitely dont want a Quad4/2.4 Twin Cam car then. 18 is about as good as it gets for them.

    i'll second sticking with the Ecotec car. i've got around $1800 in the Twin Cam in my '96 Grand Am, that's just parts and machine work, worst part is, i didnt touch anything above the head, or the pistons and cylinders. crank kit, recon the rods, align hone the mains, new oil pump, balance shaft housing, water pump, timing set, and gaskets throughout. im in this far on a "free" car, and the damn thing still wont run. found out yesterday, that 3 of my 4 injectors are stuck. it all started with a spun rod bearing, and a "while i'm in here" mentality. what to do with the next "free" car... SCRAP IT!
     
  10. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    There's a 3400 V6 sitting in the shop I think we can cram in there.... :)
     
  11. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    did they change the j bodies enough ( i think they did) so you cant use older j body stuff to swap in a v6? or would i have to be all custom
     
  12. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    Custom in a kinda-sorta way. Big PITA for wiring :(
     
  13. ryan22re

    ryan22re 1/2 ton status

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    yeah that whole bcm inst cluster pcm security system never really impressed me. not to mention everything else that runs through all three.
     
  14. Jagged

    Jagged 1 ton status

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    I've pretty much made up my mind on the car though. The RS I have needs so much more work done to it. On closer inspection, this is what I'll be doing with the Z24:

    Engine/Tranny swap to a quad-4 with 90k on the ticker and no mechanical problems (current engine has a knock and the tranny won't get in gear soemtimes)

    R&R driver window motor, R&R pass. regulator assy.

    R&R hood (PO ran into something about a day before trade-in for another vehicle)

    Paint (currently black, easy to shoot with black)

    Steam clean the interior. PO had some kids, enough said.

    Remove window tint, ****ty job done on it.


    And yes, the RS does need way more work than that, and it's work I don't know how to do much of myself (pass. quarter panel and right trunklip needs cut out and replaced), then a lot of "smoothing" bodywork.


    The 3400 would make for a bad-ass sleeper, but that's more work than I'm willnig to accomplish. I have all parts-on-hand to fix up the Z24 real nice, and my T-10 blazer is about to fall apart :(
     
  15. beater_k20

    beater_k20 Banned

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    i wouldnt bet on it staying that way. my 96 began a slight knock at 94K, and within 50 mi, spun the #3 rod bearing.
     

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